Apple’s biggest Siri upgrades may not land on iPhones until early next year

A hand holding an iPhone showing the new Siri
(Image credit: Apple)

It’s no secret that Siri – Apple’s virtual helper on iOS and macOS – hasn’t been able to keep up with its rivals, whether that’s Google Assistant or ChatGPT, and while Apple provided a glimmer of hope at its WWDC event in June, revealing a wide-ranging overhaul of Siri, it remained pretty tight-lipped on when exactly this upgrade would make an appearance.

Now, Bloomberg journalist Mark Gurman has revealed when we should expect the new version of Siri to land on our devices – and it doesn’t sound like it’s going to be any time soon. According to Gurman’s latest Power On newsletter, we could be waiting until early next year for the new features.

Gurman has previously reported that several of Siri’s new abilities would not make it in time for the likely release of iOS 18 in September, and would instead launch at some point in 2025. But there’s been no word on when exactly we might see the changes come into effect.

And he may now have spilled the beans on Apple’s schedule, writing: “Siri features are likely to go into beta testing for developers in January and then debut publicly around the springtime – part of an iOS 18.4 upgrade that’s already in the works.” That means it’s possible we won’t see anything until March or April, and possibly as late as May.

Better late than never?

Updates to Siri being presented at Apple's Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) 2024.

(Image credit: Future)

The schedule outlined in Gurman’s report refers to some of Siri’s new abilities, such as enabling you to control features within apps for the first time (so you can edit an image then email it to a friend, for example). Another feature is Siri’s contextual understanding, which will give it awareness of what you're doing or seeing on your screen and take actions based on that content.

We won't have to wait until next year for every new feature, though, as Siri’s redesign and Apple’s integration of ChatGPT into iOS, among other things, will be coming “later this year,” Gurman says. The journalist has previously claimed that the redesign will launch alongside iOS 18, while the ChatGPT integration might have to wait until later in 2024.

However, it seems that the headline features relating to Siri’s core abilities – rather than its visual look or tools provided by a different chatbot – won’t be with us for at least another six months, if not more. That’s a frustratingly long delay, but it shouldn’t be too surprising. After all, Apple prefers to wait until it feels that it's nailed a new feature, rather than hurry it out of the door before it’s ready.

Given how desperately Siri needs a major overhaul, this approach is probably the right one – after all, we wouldn't want to wait years for Siri to catch up, only to find it’s rushed and unfinished after all of Apple’s WWDC hype. Here’s hoping the wait is worth it.

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Alex Blake
Freelance Contributor

Alex Blake has been fooling around with computers since the early 1990s, and since that time he's learned a thing or two about tech. No more than two things, though. That's all his brain can hold. As well as TechRadar, Alex writes for iMore, Digital Trends and Creative Bloq, among others. He was previously commissioning editor at MacFormat magazine. That means he mostly covers the world of Apple and its latest products, but also Windows, computer peripherals, mobile apps, and much more beyond. When not writing, you can find him hiking the English countryside and gaming on his PC.